Professor Veena Dubal’s work, Wage Slave or Entrepreneur?: Contesting the Dualism of Legal Worker Identities (2017) 10 5 Cal.L.Rev. 65, 72, was cited in the California Supreme Court’s decision in the pivotal “gig economy” case of Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County.
In a unanimous decision, the California Supreme Court embraced a standard that presumes workers in California are employees instead of independent contractors. Citing Professor Dubal’s research on the various standards to determine who is considered an employee, the Court stated, “it is important to recognize that over the years and throughout the country, a number of standards or tests have been adopted in legislative enactments, administrative regulations, and court decisions as the means for distinguishing between those workers who should be considered employees and those who should be considered independent contractors.”
The Court rejected the prior multi-part test that had been in use for nearly 30 years, and adopted the “ABC” test, which presumes workers are employees instead of independent contractors for purposes of state wage orders and places the burden on employers to prove the workers aren’t employees.